Tuesday, December 26, 2006

God Delusion #21: P.Z. Myers' Tries to Save Dawkins By Telling a Fable

P.Z. Myers joins what is sure to be one of many atheistic attempts to defend Dawkins's God Delusion. On his blog Myers creates a fable he calls "The Courtier's Reply" which begins with the sentence "I have considered the impudent accusations of Mr Dawkins with exasperation at his lack of serious scholarship." {12/24/06) Dawkins, says Myers, accuses the Emperor of wearing no clothes. But Dawkins, a good deal of the time, not only engages in no serious scholarship but this failure leads to conclusions that only follow from the straw men he has set up.

GD is, much of the time if not most of the time, a poorly written book. And all this from someone who champions human reason. Dawkins has no understanding, e.g., of the proofs of God he finds faulty. So... the Emperor has no clothes? This might be interesting if Dawkins could actually identify the Emperor in the first place. Such incoherence should lead scholarly atheists to beat a path away from Dawkins as one of their own.

Myers especially dislikes the H. Allen Orr essay. (See link in my previous post.) I think Orr's essay is well-written and, while Orr states his respect for Dawkins's The Selfish Gene, he writes, e.g., re. GD: "none of Dawkins's loud pronouncements on God follows from any experiment or piece of data. It's just Dawkins talking." Or, I cannot help but think as I read GD, it's just Dawkins cutting and pasting from the internet.

The various atheistic attempts to save Dawkins, their champion, will prove interesting. Myers decides to write a fable. Why not just admit that Dawkins has failed and let it go? There are serious atheistic responses that theists must take into account and the Dawkins failure takes nothing away from them, except to make a theist like myself tremble at the thought of Dawkins'-type atheists ruling the world.